The new Microsoft “I’m A PC!”

Microsoft just released their retort to Apple’s “I’m a PC and I’m a Mac” ad — and one must say that the ads are absolutely cool!

Microsoft has chosen to use the opening line from Apple’s ad — and turn it into their strength. The ad first shows a (real) Microsoft employee, Sean Siler, saying “I’m a PC” and then goes on to parade a lot of cool people — many of whom are celebrities (one can spot Deepak Chopra, Bill Gates, Eva Langoria, Tony Parker) saying how they use a PC too and they live the new Microsoft Maxim Life without Walls.

These follow the disappointing Bill Gates – Jerry Seinfeld that nobody got — Microsoft has chosen to call them the ice-breaker to start conversation about the PC.

See the ads here:

What a reply! This is adverti-zing !

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One Journey ends. Another Begins.

As I just finish one journey, a wonderful journey, at a wonderful place which has been a home more than home for the last two years — colleagues who have been more than friends, and seniors who have been such wonderful people, I can’t but feel a tinge of nostalgia, a small feeling of void that can not be put into words. As I started writing my goodbye mail, I found myself deleting sentences again and again, because I realized that whatever I might say could not do justice to the experience I have had. Finally I settled for the words of Rabindranath Tagore:

I have got my leave. Bid me farewell, my brothers!
I bow to you all and take my departure.

Here I give back the keys of my door
—and I give up all claims to my house.
I only ask for last kind words from you.

We were neighbors for long,
but I received more than I could give.
Now the day has dawned
and the lamp that lit my dark corner is out.
A summons has come and I am ready for my journey.

Making Money

As Google announced depressed outlook due to lower than expected revenues from Social Networking sites with which it has done massive deals, these SocNet sites are using more and more innovative ways of making money:

Tera Patrick Facebook Sponsored Ad

If you haven’t heard of Tera Patrick, it means you never lived in a boy’s hostel.

It’s all about money, honey. Anything goes, including $44b in shareholder wealth for a single DNS entry. Strange are the ways of men. Back to the Shire!

Don Dodge on my Blog!

Ok. Here’s this guy whose blog you read. He leads a rather big organization in one of the largest software companies in this world, and you feel that his is one voice in all the commotion that makes some sense. For that reason, you might miss TechCrunch, but you try not to miss his blogs. And then one day, you get up, and see that he had recently visited your blog.

don_dodge

Oh, it feels good. Thank you Don Dodge. I know I don’t write the kind of content that you do, but rest assured that I read every one of your posts. And what I like about them is that instead of giving news, they give insights.

Oh, and not to mention that a common employer also makes me more of your fan!

UPDATE: And Don actually came back and commented on my blog! Wow.

How Microsoft conquered China? Through Research

This CNN Money article describes how Microsoft built up its Chinese subsidiary into a formidable force despite rampant piracy by working closely with the government and aligning its own strategy with the government’s development goals. However, notice the paragraph:

But it was a relatively small step in 1998 – the opening of a research center in Beijing – that proved a turning point. “We just started it here because we thought they’d do great research,” says Gates, who raves about the quality of the country’s computer scientists. The lab was what Gates calls a “windfall” for Microsoft’s image. It began accumulating an impressive record of academic publications, helped lure back smart émigré scientists, and contributed key components to globally released products like the Vista operating system. The lab soon became, according to polls, the most desirable place in the country for computer scientists to work.

Read more about Microsoft Research Asia.

Life at Google – A Microsoftie Perspective

Link: http://no2google.wordpress.com/2007/06/24/life-at-google-the-microsoftie-perspective/

An interesting take on Google culture by a Microsoftie who left Microsoft to do a startup, got acquired by Google, and then moved back to Microsoft. I would condense it into the following points:

  1. Life is great for people who have just started work. Google takes care of most needs, and as a result, people spend a lot more hours at work.
  2. Very few people make use of the 20% time, since their managers don’t stress on it.
  3. Private offices for technical staff are not preferred at Google, which is not necessarily good (I would personally back this, since I have seen my productivity increase since I moved into a cabin).
  4. Career growth prospects are not clear. There are no growth tracks you can choose. It seems to suggest that there is very less clarity on how growth happens.
  5. There is more focus on freebies than on organizational structure and growth paths. In fact, there are one too many people under the same manager, which makes some things very complicated.
  6. In some ways, Google is a lot more flexible, eg. TechStop

Actually, right in the beginning the author claims that the culture at Google at the moment is very similar to what was in Microsoft a couple of decades back.

I am not clear if much credence can be lent to it, it might just be internet flotsam that has found its way into my inbox. I would, however, agree that as Google ages and as do its employees, a lot more processes will be put in place. Oh, and I think the view is very much Redmond and Mountain View centric, so we should not try to generalize finer details to international locations even though the culture would be close to head office. (For instance, they might not do laundry in Google office in Bangalore!)

[Thanks to AshChord for the tip]

In the company of friends – Gates and Jobs

Another article at Desicritics. 

Would not rate my writing very high since I wrote it when I was half asleep, but I wanted to write about this monumental meeting between the two titans and so there it is.

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